When an animal bite becomes infected, it can lead to much more severe ramifications than the bite alone. Infections can spread throughout the body and could even become life-threatening. In some cases, an infection could lead to the need for surgery or even an amputation.
In other words, a bite itself is bad enough, but an infection is something that everyone needs to take seriously. Experts note that bites on the hand have a greater chance of developing an infection. But infection can develop and spread anywhere if someone has been bitten by an animal. As a result, if you or a loved one has been bitten, it’s important to monitor one’s condition very carefully with the risk of infection in mind.
The symptoms tend to get worse
Before getting into the specific symptoms, it’s important to note that people should be wary of symptoms that seem to be getting worse. Simply having a bite wound that is painful doesn’t mean it’s infected. But if it’s not healing and other symptoms are developing instead, that could mean that the infection is growing. Some potential signs of infection more broadly include:
- Stiffness near the bite or problems moving the injured area
- Drainage of pus and other fluid from the bite wound
- Pain that grows worse over time, especially when touching that area of the body
- Increased redness, which may show up as red streaks that move away from the bite and up the extremities
- Tightness and swelling around the bite, which could be part of the reason it’s difficult to move.
- Lymph nodes that are enlarged, a common indicator that the body is fighting an infection
- The development of a fever, a temperature and related symptoms
In some cases, an infection can become so serious that someone will need emergency medical treatment.
Do victims deserve compensation?
Unfortunately, when infection happens, it may mean that expensive treatment is needed days or even weeks after a bite. The individual who has been harmed could incur high medical bills, and they could miss time at work. This can have quite an impact on their finances and their quality of life. If someone else was responsible for the injuries – such as a negligent dog owner who did not keep a dangerous dog on a leash – then the bite victim needs to know how to seek financial compensation.